A sticker on the engine cover proudly tells us the mower made 17.5 horsepower when it was new and fully stock. We don’t know how much grunt the V8 pumps out because the 350 was manufactured in various forms for decades, and its power output was all over the chart. For example, it churned out a generous 350 horsepower when it sat between the long, bulging fenders of the 1969 Chevrolet Corvette, but just 165 horses when it powered work-oriented pickup trucks in the middle of the 1980s.
Nevertheless, the mower has about 10 times more power than stock — if not more. And, it certainly won’t pass as a mundane, run-of-the-mill riding mower, and the engine swap looks surprisingly well done. The twin exhaust pipes running down both sides of the body emit the low burble you’re used to hearing when you’re in the presence of a muscle car, and a make-shift instrument cluster provides vital information about what’s going on under — we mean, over — the hood.
This is an awesome, ingenious build that we’d love to get our hands on. It looks like other enthusiasts agree, because there’s a huge trophy sitting in the footwell. Clearly, someone saw fit to properly reward the builder’s resourcefulness, and sheer dedication to making the task of mowing the lawn enjoyable.
There’s one small modification we’d make to it, though: we’d move the seat a little bit higher up and mount a small cooler right under it, so we can stay hydrated during the hot summer months. And, while we’re at it, why not add a Bluetooth-enabled stereo system?